Brisbane Roar look to snap Sydney FC curse and to remain in first place in Australia’s W-League

The two teams that met in last year’s W-League Grand Final and then in round one of this year’s W-League season, will face each other Saturday, Jan. 1, in a game that will give one team a significant upper hand heading into the final four weeks of the 2010/11 season. The Brisbane Roar look to retain their spot at the top of the table, while second-place Sydney FC needs only a draw to pull level with the Roar.

Sydney FC, the Sky Blues, beat the Roar, 3-2, in last year’s Grand Final. The team’s drew, 1-1, during their only meeting of the 2009/2010 regular season. In the teams’ round one match this season (Nov. 6, 2010), Sydney FC never trailed in its 4-2 win. Heather Garriock scored twice for the Sky Blues. Renee Rollason and Kyah Simon also scored. Currently, Simon is tied for first with Canberra United’s Michelle Heyman for the league lead in goals scored (six).

Of the top eight scorers in the W-League this season, six play for either Sydney or Brisbane. The Roar’s Tameka Butt has five goals, followed by teammate Lana Harch and Sydney’s Leena Khamis, who have four each. Brisbane’s Lisa De Vanna has three goals.

A loss to Brisbane on Saturday certainly will set back Sydney, but the Sky Blues do have a game in hand and lead in goal differential (13 to Brisbane’s 9). Syndey’s only loss this year came in round four when the team lost, 2-1, at home to the Newcastle Jets.

Saturday’s game is Sydney’s first at home (Campbelltown Stadium) since the loss to Newcastle. After the loss to Sydney in round one this season, Brisbane drew 1-1 with Canberra one week later. Since then, the Roar are 5-0 and now have a 5-1-1 record. Sydney’s record is 5-1.